The last tier of the waste hierarchy you can control is recycling waste so it can be made into the same or different products.
Analysis of the average composition of red bin (general) waste from Multi Unit Dwellings in the City of Sydney Local Government Area revealed that apartment residents recycle approximately half the amount that detached and semi-detached houses do (Seasonal Waste Audit, APC Environmental Management, September 2012).
Around 20% of that waste (now headed for landfill) is recyclable through Council’s standard services – and all but 20% of it could either be avoided or recycled through other services.
Source: 2011‐2012 City of Sydney Seasonal Waste Audit, APC Environmental Management
Note: “Other Organics” included rubber, leather, textiles, oils, and wood.
There are now many great resources and tools to direct you to the best place to recycle unwanted goods - so we don’t need to list all the options here, they are at your fingertips whenever you need them.
The key services to familiarise yourself with are:
The RecycleSmart app gives you the latest recycling information in your pocket. It answers the "what should I do with my waste?" question for over 500 Councils in Australia
RecyclingNearYou contains information about the recycling and waste services offered by your council as well as local drop-off options for items including computers, batteries, printer cartridges, mobile phones and many more
Garbage Guru was developed by the City of Sydney. In addition to directing residents to services offered by the City of Sydney where relevant, it also lists other options accessible to most people for hundreds of items
Community Recycling Centres are being progressively established across NSW. They are drop-off centres for common ‘household problem wastes’ that can’t be collected via council kerbside waste and recycling collection services. They accept fluorescent globes & tubes, household batteries, paint, gas bottles, fire extinguishers, motor oils, other oils, car batteries and smoke detectors.
You can take action individually to further segregate your recycling AND work with your buildings executive committee to expand recycling capabilities for all residents
Have a look a look at these case studies to get ideas on what’s possible: